WORK PROJECTS ADMINISTRATION
•7 . ^
BOSTON PUBLIC UBRARTf
June 30, 1939
To the Citizens of Ifassachuaetts :
The Federal Music Project is happy
to present the following report of recent activities.
We, as a project, pay tribute to
our many friends and to the §tate Administrator,
John J, McDonough, and his staff, whose sympathetic
understanding have aided our work.
Thus, in a spirit of appreciation,
we pause to thank those whose encouragement has made
possible this project, who have assisted the needy musi-
cians and advanced the future of music as an art in this
C^aie^ &M-c<M^ <^>i^^^^ 9
ecause the musician is a craftsman , an artist who earns his living by
sharing his art with others, either by public performance or teaching,
BECAUSE,mechanical devices have destroyed the opportunities for public
performance, and the economic situation has reduced the opportunities for
BECAUSE, the "talkies", "nickel-in-the-slot" machines and radio-chain
broadcasting (a chain broadcast may employ one small group of musicians
in one radio station and service fifty radio stations covering the entire
nation) have in the space of afew years totally changed the employment
picture for our musicians,
BECAUSE, in the city of Boston, alone, ^proximately three-hundred (300)
musicians regularly earned their livelihood in theatres. During the past
season 6nly seven (7) men were steadily employed in theatrical work
throughout the entire city,
BECAUSE, years of Study, years of experience, and a lifetime service to the
community were about to be thrown away as "not needed" in this, our
BECAUSE, th^ Federal Government would not allow such prodigious -craste
of talent. Conservation of the nation's resources called for. the saving of
the musical art and the skill of its executants,
THUS, the Federal Music Project is an outcome of an 3nlightened point of
view which will allow no want of the necessities of life and will permit
no diminution of the cultural assets of these United States,
^^^wolve hundred and fifty (1260) musicims ere fit pressnt employed on this
project in Massachusetts, Their need of omployinont has been certified by
local welfare agencies in their hor.e city or tovm. Their professional back-
grounds have been formally attested to, and thoir ability has been proven
before an impartial audition board of prominent musicians.
The musicians on the project are grouped into thirty-nine (39) units four
symphony orchestras, ten bands, fourteen orchestras, four choruses and
The units are located in Boston, Cambridge, Somerville, Newton, Quincy,
Everett, Bedford, Salem, Lynn, Kfeverhill, Brockton, Fall River, Taunton, New
Bedford, Worcester, Fitchburg, Springfield and Chicopee,
project's aim is two- fold, to retain the skill of the needy musician
and to better equip and aid him for a speedy return to private employment.
During the past twelve months 2 79 musicians have left for private employment.
Unfortunately, many were forced to return due to the temporary nature of the
One entire unit -The Boston Federal Lfadrigal Singers- organized and 'train-
ed under Federal Auspices has left on a tour under private employment^ of
various colleges and universities in the South, Thus, under the policy of
the Jfusic Project, these singers have been aided to regain their places in
Eleven members of the Boston Symphony Orchestra are former employees of the
Federal Music Project,
Our motto has always been; "Constant improvement "-for the sake of the indi-
vidual musician, the project and the community.
Bp rom July 1, 1938 to June 30, 1939, we presented 3,715 concerts before
an audience of 2,248,659 in the following 157 communities 4
Shaws he en
Ne e d ham
Newton Upper Falls
Swamps CO tt
Swans e a
Chic ope e
Lowe 1 1
Qui no y
West Towns end
he progra^is of the Federfl.1 JIusic Project run the entire gamut of musi-
cal literature, llftiatever your favorite music, a music project unit special-
izes in that type. Folk song? our colored groups sing them as they should
be sung. Popular melodies? we sing and play them in the latest fashion.
Martial music? listen to our bands, Symphony? do you prefer Beethoven or
Tschaikowsky ? Grand Opera? we sing it in English, making it more appealing
and understandable tg thousands. Oratorio? the music project is keeping
this stately form of sacred music alive. Do you wonder that last year we
attracted millions of persons to our concerts?
ederal Music Project activities are consistently non-competitive. Our
aim is not to put the few rexaainii^ privately employed musicians out of work
but to open up new fields for our unemployed musicians and in this way in-
crease the future need for musical services*
,Fjl n doveloping new fields v/e havo encour? ^ed psyin^ audiences, groups of
citizens v;ho could form a nucleus for future self-support for our musicians.
Such sponsorship has doubled in the past 12 months,
A fev/ examples of recent sponsors are:
Vilhitman Kiwanis Club
Lawr-ence Turn Vorein
Turners Falls Rotary,' Club
Norv/ood Teachers Association
Arlington American Ler-ion Post
Boston Lfu.'eum of Fine Arts
Vfestfield Women's Club
Ifessachusot ts State College
Wi Hist on Acrdemy
Lions Club, Gloucester
Kiwanis Club, Brockton
Andover Teachers Association
Hudson Teachers Association
Bridgewater State Teachers College
From the Brockton Daily Enterprise:
*'l/¥hen Opera comes to Main Street and Main Street goes to Opera, it is
more than a rally for the enjoyment and encouragement of one of the
fine arts. Music lovers assist a good cause, advance appraciation,
of good music, strengthen the city's cultural side. The Government
has bean praised often and critized as often for extending its
bounty to the arts as well as to the crafts in time of distress.
Except for sueh help, however, opera could not come to Main Street,"
From the Lynn Item:
"Lynn lovers of the better things of life must be encouraged by
the evidence of culture furnished by the presence of 8000 music
lovers in the Manning Bowl this week to hear grand opera present-
ed under floodlights by the Coimnonwealth Chorus and the State Sym-
phony Orchestra under Federal Music Project auspices."
From the Fall River Herald Newss
"The fine public concerts provided by the WPA bend on Sunday even-
ings for the past two years, hit the popular fancy, delighting the
thousands gathered to hear the strf.ins of many of the popular and
classical selections of the day.
From the Norwood Daily Messenger:
"There was a time when Norwood people rsther looked down the nose
at Federal i'usic Projects, That time is over. The concerts given
by the teachers and the women's club in Junior High School were
outstanding examples of the really magnificent work this group is
doing. The capstone was put on the Federal Music plan in the
three splendid Sinfoniettas which Orient Lodge has already spon-
sored at Masonic Temple, Federal Music has "arrived" as far as
this town is concerned,"
From the Dedham Transcript:
"if the bringing to Dedham of the Opera produced no other profit
than what it brought of new musical interest to the boys and girls,
Mr, Liddell and his assistants deserve much praise for conceiving and
carryin^, out the project. But adults as well as young people enjoyed
the Opera, With so excellent an opportunity as the, Federal
Orchestra and Chorus provides, v/hy not see to it thft Dedham has its
share of this kind of music?"
^1 n presenting sponsored concerts, we have received funds which have
aided us in the proper operation of the Project,
In addition, good will created throur;hout the state induced many commun-
ities to contribute toward the non-labor expenses of our Project,
As a result, the Federal Govomment has contributed funds for labor, only,
for the past year and a half, with ISissachusetts residents paying for all
items of non-labor. Every cent of Federal Honey for the Federal Music
Project has gone to the musicians in salaries.
tiMnnwiHMiiiwiB*umiiwin**^ m i H <jlli>i
jJI^ he child is our future concert performer and audience. Thus, any aid
that we could give in enriching his musical education would be an invest-
ment for the future.
With the cooperation of superintendents of schools, principals, music-
supervisors, and teachers, we have done our utmost in developing our
yo\ing music lovers^ School authorities early recognized the value of tliis
work. As a result, we are today unable to fill the demands for this our
service, . .
During the past school year, we have preser^ted music-appreciation concerts
in 533 schools in 91 communities in Lfessachusetts , The concerts were 1468
in number and our youth-audience 699,107 ,
COIvCffiNTS BY MASSACHUSETTS EDUCATORS
Mr, J. Clement Schuler, Director of I.!usic, Springfield Trade School,
"Not only has it created and stimulated interest in our schools,
but it has been a very definite educetive force as well,"
Mr, Herbert T, Rich, Headmaster, Brighton High School, Brij;hton
"I was very much pleased with the series of concerts given by
your .Symphony Orchestra, They were a rare musical treat and
more than satisfied our anticipation,"
Mr. Arthur P, Hsuck, Director of Instrumental Music, Eraintree High School,
"The various student bodies have greatly enjoyed these concerts
and the principals and teacriers have commented most favorably on
the high educational content of ench concert,"
Mr, Oscar F, Raymond, Winthrop District Principal, Brockton
"Now we all look forward to the concerts by this band ns one of
the educational features of our assemblies,"
llr, VYr<lter F. Downey, Hendmnstor, English High School, Boston
(Present Massachusetts Commissioner of Education)
"Over 700 students listened and were most enthusiastic in their
reception of the Band,"
I.!iss Edith Sullivan, Principal, Ashlrnd School, Brockton
"We have gained a grert der.l of music appreciation from these con-
certs and ergerly await them from time to time,"
Mr, Frederick J. Murphy, Ilaster, Oliver Wendell Holmes Intermediate
"I want you to know that the teachers and the pupil's enjoyed the
concerts given by these artists m.ost fully. We considered the
programs a distinct contribution to our school life, valuable in
Sister Jfery Ernesta, Principal, Holy Trinity High School, Roxbury
"The concert given was very fine and the conductor's explanations
of the selections offered were very instructive. Both teachers
and pupils appreciated the concert,*
Miss Dorothy C. Evans, Junior High East, Arling^ton
"The instrument demonstration reinforces our class work most Rbly,**
Mr, John J. Desmond Jr., Superintendent of Schools, Chicopee
"It has been a pleasure for us to cooperate with you, rnd the re-
sults of my observation indicste to me that the pupils and tho
teachers have profited by these concerts," I trust that the pro-
gram may continue next year,"
Mr, John Kilmartin, Principal, School Dopartment, Fitchburg
"The upper-grade teachers have had but instrument charts to illus-
trate orchestral instruments. The concrete fonn of presentetion
far surpasses this mothod,"
Mr, Ernest Pitman, Principal, Richmond School, Dn.nv:jrs
"The principal, faculty, raid student body of the Richmond School
extend to you rnd your Federal Bind of the Works Progress Ai-
ministration for Llassachusetts a most sincere ftppreciation for the
excellent, instructive, Rnd entertaining program,"
Rev, Francis J, Carroll, Principal, Bernard High School, Fitchburg
"I feel that the students got much of these performances. They
were indeed worthwhile and I would like to see them continued,"
Mr, 'Vnlter C. Crmeron, Principal, Lincoln Jr. High School, Framingham
"I feel thet this organization has really built up r.n pppreciation
of and a liking for good music rjnong our boys nnd girls ,,,,,,,,,, I
certainly hope that this type of Federal Project will bo continued,"
Mr, John J, Lynch, Principal, E, E, Lnwrence Jr. High School, Holyoke
"The Orchestra and Symphony were marvelously trrined rnd were so
earnest in thsir work thr.t the spirit entered the souls of our
I'm anxiously looking forward to their return next yerr, I'm
happy thrt I had th^m in my building rnd thrt my pupils had the
privilege of soeing and hearing them. Come agrin and often,"
Mr, Harvey S. Gruver, Superintendent of Lynn Public Schools, Lynn
"While it hr s not been my privilege to attend all of these band
and orchestra concerts, I did attend several rnd was very highly
pleased v/ith the type of music rendered,"
Sister Francis I^onica, S. T,, Parochial Schools, Newton
"The childron not only enjoyed, but g-^iined much in the musical
field fr'or. the demonstration, E-^.c'i. iiit^trummt v;as explained and
its musj'-^i ■''alue :;hovm. Such vc-ir' is cvrely worthvvhile.
Ifr, William A, Tjlch, Superintendent of Schools, Peabody
•*! v/ish to ©ypress my sincere thPnk.T for the music appraciution
programs v/nich you ara again furnishing to the scliools of this
"In ridition to the inherent value of tiie music and the explanation
of the ty;xs of instrument, the attitudes, dispositions and con-
duct of your men during these perfornances serve as an excellent
example for our children,
**! fjn strongly of the opinion that t?iis project has well justified
its institution and is of practical vr. lue to our children,"
Mr, Ernest L, Collins, Headmaster, Quincy High School, Quincy
"Our anticipations regarding symphony concerts by your group were
more than satisfied. We were gratified to learn that we had devel-
oped a rgal appreciation for such music among our young people.
Your j^roup, with the competent director, hrd much to give us, and
they ^ave it very gladly. I have heard nothing but praise for the
concerts find we are looking forward to another group of concerts
Mr, Rudolph Sussman, Headmrster, High School, Reading
"This orchestra thrilled our school of six hundred students, and
it contributed vastly to their appreciation of music,"
Mr, Arthur E. Tierney, Principal, I,fery T, Ronan School, Revere
"It was enjoyed by the five hundred pupils attending and speaks
volumes for the work being performed by the unit,
"I hope the project lasts indefinitely and I look forward to a
Miss Vera C, Wentworth, Principal, Sweetser School, Saugus
"The leader chose a program of music that was both educational and
"It is my sincere hope that the ITusic Project may continue, so that
the boys and girls may enjoy more of these splendid, worthvriiile
Mr, Dwight S, Davis, Principal, Senior High School, Leominster
"You will be interested to know that the .Federal Orchestra
which played here,I,Iay 17, to about seven hundred students, presented
a program which was entertaining as well as educational,
"I do hope thf.t our own government will emulate the example of
European nations in mnintnining enough Federal orchestras to aid in
the musical education of our boys and girls. At present there are
no other means available for educating these young people in the
beauty of symphony orchestration,"
1.1^, Arthur F« Ijfershnll, Principr.l, Shepard School, Lynn
"Such concerts are a definite contribution to educrtion, and you
and your r.ssooiates are to be congratulated on your excellent show-
Ur, Edwin A, Damon, Principr.l, Pickering Jr. High School, Lynn
"The music has been very well adapted to the understanding of the
pupils and interestingly described and presented. Because of the
training of the members of the band we are confident that the
pupils have had a rare opportunity to -become appreciative of good
band music rendered by able musicians,
"We are hopeful thpt these concerts may continue to be held and
that we may be privileged to enjoy them during the next school
Sister John Ignatius, St, Ifery's Boys' High School, Lynn
"You will never know what it meant to our boys. They appreciated
every minute of it,"
Mr, Earl F» H. Emarson, Director, Industrial Arts Division of the Senior
High Schools, Lynn
"We deeply appreciated the interest you have displayed in making
it possible for us to enjoy the music of your organization. We
feel that those concerts make a valuable contribution to the lives
of our students,"
Mr, Charles H, Woodbury, Principal, Roosevelt School, I'elros©
"They presented an instructive and highly appreciated program,"
Mr, Howard R, Randall, Prinoipel, School Department, St ought on
"Your progrnm -.vas both entertaining and educative, an objective
for whioh we strive in ePch assembly,"
Mr, Herbert K, Archibald, Headmaster, Senior High School, Watertown
"Indeod the concerts were very well given here at the Watertown
Senior High School and we are looking forward to another series
of three coacerts next year, I believe you are rendering a very
distinct service to the youth of today in building up bette r appre-
ciation for the fine work in music. Keep up the good work,"
I.!r, S, Leo Madden, Principal, Bicknell School, North Weymouth
"It was very entertaining as well as instructive and hope we may
have return dates in the near future,"
I'lT, Everett G, Sherwin, Principal, North High School, Worcester
"Those concerts were extremely high grade. The benutiful classical
music introduced by informative tfilks by the director were of def-
inite educational value,"
I.'iss Ilarion D, Twiss, Principal, Roosevolt School, Worcester
"Thank you for a delightful rnd worthwhile program,"
Miss Grace A, Gilkey, Director, David Hale Fanning Trade School for Girls,
"We do appreciate this service, I feel that the girls get much of
cultural value from the excellent concerts,...,"
Mr, William F. Bucler, Lamartine Street School, Worcester
"Our pupils have enjoyed and profited very much by the concerts
given byytjur units at the school,
"Our children do not get much opportunity to hear good music well
played and so we have been very grateful to the musicians who have
come and given them worthwhile concerts,"
I.fr, Harry C, Darling, The Huntington School District, Broclrton
"WPA band concerts were first admitted to our school program grudg-
ingly, YiTe felt it a necessary act of charity. Now we consider
listening to the concerts a privilege and an educational oppor-
tunity. Time is gladly alloted for them,"
Id Peoples* Hoiie:;, Children's Home^. Kosp.ta.i.c. V'^herf^rs' Homes, in-
stitutions of every d«isci'iption, are regularl.'- vi^ic -.d - d n'-tr^oinentGl-
ists and singers. It is our joy to be of servj.czj i-^ tht^so hoi^pis,.
As one State Institution doctor recently stated: '••J'>-is trkes care of their
mental troubles -—our worst enemy#'*
During th^? past twelve-month period, we presented 84o concerts in the fol-
lowing 86 institutions :
Bristol County Hospital
U, S, Veterans' Hospital
Ijlass, General Hospital
Home for the Aged
rfome for Aged Women
Health Unit (Blossom Street)
Ladies' Helping Hand Home
Boston State Hosoital
Health Unit (North Margin Street)
Roxbury Neighborhood House
lit. Pleasant Home
liarriet Tubman House
House of the Angel Guardian
Home for Destitute Catholic Children
Boston Seamen's Friend Society
Catherine Ho ore House
Charlestov.Ti State Prison
Home for Aged Colored Women
West End Community House •
Jaiuaica plain neighborhood House
Norfolk County Hospital
Wales HoiTie for the Aged
Home for Agod
Margaret Fuller Houso
Cambridge Neighborhood Houso
Holy Ghost Hospital
C HI CO PEE
Chicopee City Infirmary
Danvcrs State Hospital
Eorao for the Aged
Old Ladios Homo
Holyoko City Homo
Boa vcr -Kelly Homo
Burko Memorial Hospital
Chelmsford Street Hospital
St. John's Hospital
Maldon Homo for the i\gcd
Harriet E, Sawyer Homo
NEW B EDFORD
Home for the Aged
Northampton State Hospital
Leeds Veteran Hospital
U. S. Veterans Hospital
Salem Health Camp
Plymouth County Hospital
Home for Aged Women
Convent of Good Shepherd
Home for Aged Men
Springfield Isolation Hospital
Taunton State Hospital
Tewksbury State Hospital
Metropolitan S^ate Hospital
Westboro State Hospital
House of the Angel Guardian
Summer Street Hospital
Home for Aged Men
Vforcester State Hospital
Worcester City Hospital
Home for Aged Vfomen
JJ^ he summer time wouldn't be complete without bsnd concerts in the parks.
The I'usic Project is doing its share toward carrying on this pleasant tra-
dition. Throughout the state, in countless parks, our units are making hot
summer evenings more enjoyable for thousands who might otherwise have little
or no recreation.
Here are some of the parks ^^fhere our units are playing this summer.
Town Hall Plaza
Foss Park ,
South Lawrence Common
he chief funation of the Composers* Fcrvim has been to encourage native
larly inspected manuscripts submitted by Nev/ Englf.nd corposers. Rehearsal-
readings have been arranged much to the profit of the composers. In addition
many a public performance has brought to the American people worthwhile works
which otherwise could not have received recognition,
122 Ifcinuscripts have been received durinp; the past year of which 83 were
accepted for possible performance.
This encouragement of American composers has awakened the public to the fact
that we have in this country worthwhile composers of worthwhile music.
creators of music.
A voluntary committee of prominent musicians has regu-
usic-teachers in need «ind children from impoverished families
here join hands in aiding each other. The teacher is restored to his right-
ful usefulness in society and the child receives music instruction which,
but for the Federal Mus^.c Project, it could not afford. An average of 3,000
pupils are thus taught each week and a ray of sunshine has entered 3,000
otherwise desolate homes,
SOIv!E CITIES AND TOWNS mffiRB TE/.CIiERS DIVISION IS OPERATING
Ho lb rook
In every instance, fre^' teaching space is donated by local citizens for the
use of the projects.
he average musician oaplpyod Is a seasoned artist «
His average age is 42,4 years
average musical study 6,6 years
average employment 17,7 years
( 257 Theatre-musicians • 25 years
107 Band musicians - 17,8 years
524 Dance musicians - 12,6 years
The average musician is too old to learn a new profession or trade; he has
invested much money and a number of years in study of the art; he has served
his community well during the best part of his life *• he is willing to con-
tinue this service.
WORK. PROJECTS ADMIKISmilON
Division of Professional and Service Projects
FLORENCE S. KERR Assistant Administrator
JOm\I J. Mcdonough state Administrator
The Federal Music Project
WILLUM C. IIAYFARTH Deputy Director
GEORGE FOSTER Regional Supervisor
WILLIAi'I HADDON State Director
Mimeographed and Published by Information Service
Federal Music Project of Massachusetts
Photographs Reproduced by Multilith Reproduction Service
WPA Production Division